Demand across Latin America for workers trained in information and communication technologies will exceed supply by 35 percent or more than 296,000 professionals, in 2015, according to a study presented in the Colombian capital.

According to the study, titled Networking Skills in Latin America and carried out by independent consultant IDC for Cisco, the region in 2011 lacked 139,800 professionals trained in network planning, design, management and support and information and communications technologies.

"The gap in 2011 between supply and demand was 27 percent and will grow to 35 percent if we don't take action now," Mauricio Carrillo, Cisco Latin America's senior director of engineering and architecture, told Efe.

IDC conducted 767 interviews at companies with more than 100 employees in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Peru and Venezuela.

The study showed a lack of 76,800 professionals with basic knowledge of essential networking technologies, including IP telephony and IP network skills, security skills and wireless network skills, or 55 percent of the total networking skills' gap.

In 2015, the projected shortfall of those professionals is expected to be 129,100 people, or 44 percent of the total gap.

"Governments and the private sector must join forces and respond and understand that without people in their countries trained in what the market demands, productivity won't grow as much as desired and the wealth they so much desire won't come," Jordi Botifoll, president of the Latin America Theater at Cisco, told Efe.

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